Morning lovelies,

Last week was back to work and involved the story ‘The Tiger Who Came to Tea’. I was not dissimilar to the tiger in that I drank an abundance of tea to survive, I ate any scrummy donated cakes to get through the day, had my hair cut and dyed an orangey red colour to sort out my mid life hair issues and was feeling strangely fierce and sometimes a little growly. . . I put it down to the first week back at work!

South Hill park, BracknellThe light in a long dark tunnel of work was watching two different musical performances by talented young friends and family.

The first was at a venue near us in Bracknell, that I have never been to called South Hill Park. We saw a mainly youth production of Oliver which was great. The venue was an old stately home with stunning grounds that is now used as an Arts centre with shows, films, events and exhibitions. We went for a meal there before hand and had a lovely burger sitting at sofas overlooking the grounds. The star of the show was the young girl playing Nancy who we knew. Her performance was fantastic for someone so young, very powerful and emotional.

The second performance of my week was a two day fundraising Cabaret at Hanworth British Royal Legion by the The grounds of South Hill Parkyoung performing group my sons have belonged to for years, called The Young Set. The venue was not as salubrious and stylish as South Hill Park, but the atmosphere, pace, costumes and talent made up for it! There are so many gifted youngsters in the group, the little ones involved are cute and it is like one big (mostly) happy family!

The highlight for me was seeing my youngest son turn a huge corner in his personal life and perform with such energy, feeling and enthusiasm. He sang beautifully despite fighting a cold and danced his sweaty socks off.  I sat there listening, watching and feeling a very proud mum.

Running up to the performances I had several nights driving him to rehearsals in London when I could easily have just stayed at home. After work I was never home long enough to write blog posts or do house cleaning, but watching and seeing your children’s talents develop and grow is a wonderful thing. Having two sons that can sing and Fosse numberperform is also a huge bonus for a parent who loves Musical Theatre! It was also lovely for family to come and watch, particularly my mum who has not been at all well in Cabaret- Jack singing Bring Him Home in Les Miserablesthe past year and who said she had tears in her eyes when he sang ‘Bring Him Home’.

The concert consisted of sections of songs and dances mostly from Musical shows including Grease, Mama Mia, 9 to 5, Fosse, Matilda and rock of Ages. One of the sections was from Les Miserables and  ‘Bring Him Home’ not only brought a tear to my mums eyes but to mine and many of the audience’s eyes too.  When one of his dancer friends rushed up surprised and said he had “smashed it” followed by one of the ladies running the club who didn’t know him at all, saying she loved his voice and he made her cry, I knew he had matched other’s ‘talent’ standards and not just mine, a proud mum!

He also sang Robbie Williams’ Angels, a more contemporary number whilst some of the strong dancers did an angel ballet. The first night the audience joined in on the chorus, but on the second night they were not quite so raucous, or drunk under a table and not in the mood for a sing song!

Cabaret -GreaseHaving finished his final performance he was approached by someone who trains performers for the P & O cruises in the audience and asked to audition. He was very flattered and it boosted his self esteem which has taken a battering recently. He was and still is tempted, but I think is coming round to the idea he wants college training first. However it did put a very big smile on his face and has made him believe that his life is turning a corner.

On another  positive note the weather is improving and the sun is getting increasingly warmer. For the Anything Goes Rehearsal outside!weekend rehearsal of Anything Goes we travelled to Horsham, where two longstanding members live. Our rehearsal space was a huge patio at the back of their house with views of the beautiful surrounding countryside. We tried not to get too distracted and we even had a BBQ afterwards.

At work the Spring sunshine means we were able to sit outside at school and enjoy our lunch whilst taking pleasure in the beautiful blossom trees that seem to have more flowers than usual. I have been trying to make a packed lunch to save money and keep my weight in check.

When I first got together with my husband 26 plus years ago he used to write me a message in my lunchbox. Imagine my surprise when I opened my lunchbox to find a message saying..

WHO SAID ROMANCE IS DEAD?! LOVE YOU xx

I was gobsmacked and almost dropped down dead!

 This week we have moved on to the story of The Selfish Crocodile. I am decidedly snappy after turning and my knee giving way yet again. I was in terrible pain and unable to move. Not dissimilar to the selfish crocodile who had toothache in the jungle and was lying on his back wailing!

On Tuesday I spent most of the afternoon and evening at A and E at Frimley park Hospital. The diagnosis appears to be a torn ligament and I need to have physio, take painkillers and treat with ice. My eczema is flaring up again and I’m beginning to agree with someone who suggested I needed to be put down as my body is falling apart!

My lunchbox had another message in it, this time a poem!

I LIKE YOUR DODGY KNEE YOU KNOW, I

T’S ALWAYS BEEN THE CASE.

I’M GLAD THAT IT’S YOUR KNEE YOU BROKE

AND NOT YOUR PRETTY FACE xxx

My colleagues are now under the impression my husband is very sweet. . . I’m not sure anyone who knows him well would use this word to describe him!

Our son had audition at PPA college in Guildford midweek and heard that he has a place for next year, so life is really on the up and we are very happy for him as long as we can afford it.

My week ended with physio and being given crutches to stop me from turning awkwardly. As I went to leave the hospital trying to hold on to two crutches and a shoulder handbag which kept falling down, I announced “I’m not sure how this is going to work!” She looked at me struggling, gave a withering look , rethought and said “shall I just give you the one!” “I think that will be easier!” said I!! Even one crutch is a challenge.

I got to Friday, Hurrah!

School blossom tree

Honestly Fiona xx